Apple settles AirPods patent infringement case with Koss before trial

After being accused of infringing on Koss’ wireless headphone patents, Apple has agreed to settle a lawsuit over its AirPods and Beats headphones, the two companies said in court Saturday ahead of Monday’s trial.

Koss accused Apple of patent infringement in a 2020 lawsuit. At the time, the company claimed it had created wireless headphones in general and wireless earbuds in particular:

Koss developed a prototype earbud based on chip development efforts, with working prototypes from the mid-2000s much like well-known consumer products flooding the market a decade and a half later.

The first of the five specific allegations appear to be arguing that Apple infringed on Cos’s patent on the core technology behind any wireless headphones.

Patent ‘025 generally describes wireless earbuds that consist of a transmitting and receiving circuit for receiving streaming audio from a data source, such as a digital audio player or computer, over a wireless network […]

The Accused Headphones have no substantial non-infringing uses.

But just days before the trial, Apple and Cos reached a settlement, according to Reuters. Details are unclear and neither the companies nor the lawyers respond to requests for comment. This is what the post said:

As the trial in the case began Monday, the two companies told the Waco, Texas federal court that they had resolved allegations that Apple infringed on Cos’ wireless headphone patents.

U.S. District Court Judge Alan Albright dismissed the case with bias on the same day, meaning it could not be reconsidered.

At the time, Koss requested royalties from sales of AirPods and Beats wireless headphones in Apple’s case, but Apple argued that its products did not infringe any patents.

And Saturday’s file in Texas stated that the companies resolved “all the contentious matters between them,” according to Reuters.

Koss has also sued other competitors for wireless headphone patent infringement, but those cases are now pending in other courts.


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